Review: SteelSeries Kinzu v2 Pro

Our score: 3/5
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March 16, 2012 3:55 PM
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Published: March 16, 2012 3:50 PM
By Vincent Alzieu
Translated by: Hugh Ehreth
Little known to the general public, in the mouse world SteelSeries is a renowned manufacturer, a reference for demanding users and gamers alike. Its strengths are high quality functionality, a sober design (as opposed to many of its competitors), and good finishing, despite minor premature ageing issues on previous models.

Kinzu v2 pro

To top it all off, the Kinzu v2 Pro has one other advantage that consumers will enjoy: a reasonable price. With the v2 Pro, SteelSeries is offering a top-tier mouse at an entry-level price. So what exactly has the company trimmed off to bring us such a low price?

For the body shape, SteelSeries has reprised a well-known and much-loved mouse: the SteelSeries Xai, one of the best on the market. The difference this time is that the surface coating has changed. We received two versions to test, one smooth, grey and shiny, and the other (which we prefer) black and matte. Unfortunately, it has lost the side buttons and retained the old bug common to SteelSeries mice: when you tilt the scroll wheel to the side, it feels like it's working, but onscreen nothing happens. All the SteelSeries scroll wheels seem to be afflicted by this same issue—it's high time they did something about it!

Kinzu v2 pro steelseries
We prefer the black one!


The sensor has changed, too. There's no more laser; this one's an LED model. This solution is surely more economical, but it's also highly effective—we checked—and easy to recognise with its red light. LED sensors tend to prefer mouse pads, so we tested the Kinzu v2 Pro on our TT Dasher. And imagine our surprise when we saw that the sensor functioned at speeds of over 5 metres per second! That's one of the highest scores we've ever seen. Another merit is its widely varying speed of exchange with the computer. The v2 Pro doesn't just stay put at 1000 Hz, meaning that it uses an extremely low amount of CPU power. In our tests it had a range of 4 to 25% CPU use—that's two to three times lower than other gaming models.

Cube m s
A gamer's mouse needs a sensor that works through
movements faster than 3 metres per second


All the same, we do have trouble seeing who, if anyone, will actually fall for this mouse. Yes, it does use very little processing power, and yes, it does have a very good sensor, but it's missing buttons and it's too light (68 grammes). That's not exactly what the demanding user is looking for... Or maybe it's supposed to be targeted to gamers who hardly ever play and only use second-rate computers, no-frills notebooks, or declining PCs.
3/5 SteelSeries Kinzu v2 Pro DigitalVersus 2012-03-16 16:50:00

Pros

  • The sensor handles speeds of over 5 mps!
  • Low price
  • Left- and right-handed
  • Looks good, especially the black one
  • Double braided cord
  • Very low CPU usage, despite the 1000 Hz

Cons

  • A bit too lightweight: 68 g
  • The LED sensor prefers to be used on a mouse pad
  • No side buttons
  • Noisy & notched scroll wheel; some Logitech wheels come with a choice of notched or smooth
  • Wide glides (although they're removable, as opposed to the Nova X 600)

Conclusion

Used with a good pad, this mouse gives great gaming performances. Too bad it's so lightweight and doesn't have side buttons.

OUR SCORE 3/5
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